|My Alphabe Thursday theme: Places I've Been|
Nine years ago, I fell through the sky with my fellow Jumping Beans Jeanette, Jennifer, and Charlie. That was our big thing to mark being in our 50s.
Yes, yes, I know. I've mentioned my jump before in other posts. But, I haven't ever described being up in the sky, free-falling, and then floating downward. It only took nine years to write about it.
|Jennifer, Jeanette, Su-sieee! Mac, and Charlie|
photo courtesy of Lisa Q.
We, jumping beans, waited four hours one Sunday afternoon to board a small plane, get attached to a professional skydiver, be dropped off at a certain point in the sky, and fall, then float, within minutes to the drop zone. Interestingly, none of our significant others wanted to experience it all with us.
Charlie and I opted to fall from the highest altitude—18,000 feet. Gulp. I just came back from figuring how high that is—about 3.4 miles. Wowza (said in a little voice).
What do I still remember about being up there?
I was grinning like a crazy person on the plane ride. We reached a certain altitude and out came the oxygen masks. I felt fine without it, but still put it on. The view of the top of the Diablo Range was spectacular. I wondered if I was looking into a caldera at one point.
I sat on my instructor's (aka the professional skydiver) lap in order for him to attach him to me. I outweighed him by at least 30 pounds. I felt bad that I may have been crushing him. When it was time to jump, he and I inched our way to the door, me in front of him. The videographer jumped first. I hesitated at the door. The instructor pushed me, and voila I was yelling and "flying" away from the plane.
Supposedly I arched my back, and my legs bent back between the instructor's legs. He stretched my arms out in, I guess, a standard position. He motioned for me to yell, which I still don't understand why. The videographer flew up to us and motioned for me to look up at him and the camera. I was more interested in looking around. I could see all the way to the Monterey Bay.
Think of all the superlatives you can and that's what it was like to be up in the sky.
It was very noisy up there. I suppose it was the sound of our bodies, clothing, and skin flapping about. I can almost approximate the sound when I lean my head out the car window when the Husband is driving at a good clip.
The deployment of the parachute was kind of jarring. It opened and we jerked up in the air. Then, we began a smooth, quiet descent. The instructor zig-zagged us downward over the golden hills of San Benito County. I became a chatterbox. The Husband said he could hear me from way below.
The drop zone was the field across from the small church where I was baptized as a baby. As we approached the drop zone, I held my legs straight out. Bump! I was down on the ground. And, then came the hardest part—getting up.
Soon after that day, I fantasized about being a very old lady shuffling to the plane every morning for my daily jump.
You never know.
It's the letter U (as in Up) at Alphabe Thursday, hosted by the delightful Jenny Matlock. To participate or check out other U posts, please click here.